Harry Kane's UEFA Euro 2020 Nike Phantom GT Elite match worn/issue football boots

Harry Kane's UEFA Euro 2020 Nike Phantom GT Elite match worn/issue football boots


Player Name: Harry Edward Kane

Clubs: Tottenham Hotspur, Leyton Orient (loan), Millwall (loan),

Norwich City (loan), Leicester City (loan)

Country: England

Position: Striker

DOB: 28/07/1993

Height: 6 ft 2 in

Harry Kane MBE is an English professional footballer who plays as a striker for FC Bayern Munich, and formerly of  Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur and captains the England national team. Regarded as one of the best strikers in the world, Kane is known for his prolific goalscoring record and ability to link play.

Born and raised in the London borough of Waltham Forest, Kane began his career at Tottenham Hotspur, where, after fast progression through the team's youth academy, he was promoted to the senior team in 2009, at age 16. He did not initially feature for the side, and was loaned out several times to clubs across the English football pyramid, including spells at Leyton Orient, Millwall, Leicester City, and Norwich City. Kane's involvement at Tottenham began to increase following the arrival of Mauricio Pochettino as head coach in 2014. In his first full season at the club, Kane scored 31 goals across all competitions, was the Premier League's second-highest goalscorer, and was named PFA Young Player of the Year.

In the 2015–16 and 2016–17 seasons, Kane finished as the league's top goalscorer. In the latter campaign, he helped Tottenham finish as the competition's runners-up and won the PFA Fans' Player of the Year award. Kane registered his best campaign statistically to date in the 2017–18 season, with 41 goals scored in 48 games across all competitions, and in the following season, he finished as a runner-up in the UEFA Champions League. In February 2021, he became Tottenham's second-highest all-time goalscorer in official competitions. He ended the 2020–21 season as the top goalscorer and top assist provider in the league.

Here we have what can most certainly be considered as literal gold dust. We have managed to get our hands on a pair of Harry Kane's completely custom Nike Phantom GT Elite boots, which are from the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament. 

Kane's boots have practically never been seen before in the match worn/issued boot collectors market, with only a literal few pairs out there in collections globally, and the most recent known pair to be in the hands of a collector being from the 2017-18 season. Since then, none of the England captain's boots have come out of neither the club or country's locker rooms, until now, so to acquire a special pair of his that are not only from a major international tournament, but one that only finished so recently, was no easy task. But never put anything past us...

Here we will delve into the depths and details of all the custom elements on this pair in comparison to the standard retail variant of the Nike Phantom GT Elite, you may have even spotted a couple of differences from the pictures above. It is difficult to portray just how incredible this pair are, pictures simply do not do them justice. Currently 7th on the table of the Premier League's all time top goalscorers with 166 goals to his name, Kane has openly admitted that he has his eyes set on that 1st place which is currently occupied by the legendary Alan Shearer, with 260 goals.

Kane has scored 38 goals in 61 games for England. He appeared and scored at every youth level, and made a goalscoring debut with the senior team in March 2015, aged 21. Kane featured and scored during England's successful UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying, and represented the country at the tournament itself. He was made the squad's captain from May 2018, before the 2018 FIFA World Cup. In that tournament Kane finished as the World Cup's top goalscorer, winning the Golden Boot, leading England to fourth place, their highest finish since 1990. He captained England to second place at UEFA Euro 2020, with them marking their first appearance in a final at the tournament and their first major final since 1966. Harry scored 4 goals during the tournament, with all 4 coming in the knockout stages.

As with the majority of Nike's highest profile sponsored athletes their boots are precisely hand crafted in their 'Athlete Services' factory which is located in Monetebelluna, Italy. With Harry Kane being one of the deadliest strikers in world football, he is no exception to this. As we can see above, the iconic insoles which bare the Nike Swoosh & 'Made in Italy' to the right, with the Montebelluna factory logo to the left which bares 'Athlete Service' underneath. Inside the logo, to the top left quarter, it states 'MB est. 96', so custom boots for top Nike players isn't a new thing... Nike done well to hide this for as long as they did! It wasn't until around 2015 that they started to supply the boots with these special insoles. 

An avid family man, Harry Kane has his children's names & DOB's etched on every pair of his boots. His 2 daughter's Ivy & Vivi were his first born both in 2017 and 2018 respectively, along with his newly born son Louis who arrived in the Kane family at the very end of the 2020 calendar year. Along with these details, Harry has his surname along with the St. George's Cross flag added to each personalised area of the boots. At this point, looking at the above pictures, you may be thinking 'but Nike didn't sell this Phantom GT Elite model in any form of SG (soft ground) variant?'... well that is correct, FG (firm ground) was the only available option to the public, but for their top sponsored athletes, Nike go to extreme lengths to meet their needs...

In the above picture we have a side by side comparison of the soleplate from Kane's custom Phantom GT Elite, with the standard retail version. The plate on Harry's pair is actually the SG-Pro one lifted directly from the 2013 CTR360 Maestri iii model, it has been made completely transparent in order to disguise the stud configuration itself from being spotted on TV cameras and by fans watching at the matches in person. A graphic print of the retail plate has been applied to the underside of the boot, prior to the soleplate itself being fitted, so that it shines through giving (to the naked eye at least) the impression that Kane is wearing just a standard pair which you or I could go to our local sports store and purchase. But no, that is far, FAR, from the truth.

Other England players such as John Stones & Tyrone Mings used this same soleplate on their pairs of the Phantom GT Elite during the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament. Whilst it's a fairly simple stud layout design, it has actually been a favourite of many of Nike's top sponsored players since its release back in around 2012/13. We have seen players use this plate across all different models, such as Leonardo Bonucci on his Magista Obra 1. If you look closely, the black lines of the underneath graphic print do very closely resemble the staggered surface of the retail Phantom GT Elite soleplate, it really is a clever (and somewhat deceitful), piece of design.  

As the construction of this custom soleplate has used the identical mould as when it was originally released all those years ago, details such as the central Nike Swoosh can still be seen. Although this part is of course transparent, just as is the rest of the plate, and the graphic print underneath further disguises it, upon close inspection it is still very noticeable - rather interesting that the craftsemen inside the Montebelluna factory haven't just made a new mould without this central Swoosh, as no modern Nike boots tend to have it on the retail variants.

There are many reasons as to why this particular soleplate is so favoured by some of Nike's best players, one of the main ones being the even balance throughout. Many soleplates today feature the 'split sole' trend which yes, whilst they do look aesthetically pleasing, they really aren't that great to play in... especially at the elite level. The soleplate on Kane's custom boots is fairly flat throughout, unlike the split sole of the retail version Phantom GT Elite which features a sort of semi split sole with the attachment bar running down the lateral side of the sole connecting the forefoot and rear studs together. Because of that, all sorts of strengthening is built in to compensate for the balance of the boot, which from there is seemingly fighting a losing battle and just making the construction over complicated for no performance benefit. Whereas with Kane's pair, the soleplate allows the midfoot area to flex naturally because of its simplistic soleplate.

The actual stud configuration itself its better suited to the elite level pitches in which players like Kane ply their trade on. The FG & SG studs are of the same length, which again helps with that overall balance, and they are nicely spaced out without compromising anything whatsoever, especially with the FG moulded studs being made conical (rounded). The 2 FG studs in the rear of each boot each feature a strengthening bar which runs from the studs themselves right through to the centre of the midfoot area on the soleplate, further providing stability.

Kane named former Spurs striker Teddy Sheringham his childhood idol, and saw him as a "great finisher" and a role model in his ability to get in the box and score goals. Other childhood sporting influences he cited include David Beckham and Jermain Defoe. Kane has also spoken of his admiration for the former Brazil forward Ronaldo, adding that he loved to watch footage of him on YouTube: "He was one of the first ones I looked at and thought, 'Wow. He's a goalscorer, I want to be a goalscorer.' Former Tottenham manager David Pleat described Kane as an "old-fashioned traditional centre-forward". Clive Allen, who coached him at Tottenham, stated that "one thing I'd say about him, which unfortunately you don't say about a lot of young footballers, is that he had a passion for the game. He loves football, he loves playing, he loves scoring goals". His former Tottenham under-21 coach Les Ferdinand likened Kane's movement to their former forward Teddy Sheringham, and the power and accuracy of his shots to Alan Shearer.

A custom insole board has also been built in with the construction of each boot, which is of a much thicker build and does not feature the 'Nike Grip' contour holes. These custom boards make the boots extremely stiff, which is the preference of many top players, not just Nike's sponsored players either, but players across all brands including Adidas and Puma. The elite players really do not like flimsy boots. The written number on the inside of the boots is the ID number of the players' custom foot last (mould) in the Montebelluna factory. 

Due to the bespoke insole boards of Kane's pair, the insoles have had the 'Nike Grip' contoured elements shaven down to make a completely flat surface so that  they're able to work in conjunction together. Had they not been removed, this may create unnecessary pressure to Harry's midfoot.

Interestingly, Kane likes his boots constructed with an 'over hang' section, so to speak, at the heel area of each boot. Another player who has this is Cristiano Ronaldo, it is a modification that really is circumstantial to the individual player in question. It may work for one, whilst another may find it uncomfortable. As this difference can alter the placement of the foot when running and striking a ball, it can have a big impact on a players' game.

A tall and physical striker, Kane's style of play has been compared to that of former Tottenham forward Jürgen Klinsmann, a comparison Kane called flattering in February 2015. In March 2015, Football Association chairman Greg Dyke named Kane as the benchmark for clubs producing young English players. Shearer said that month that the three best strikers playing in the league were Kane, Diego Costa and Sergio Agüero. ESPN reporter Michael Cox stated that "Kane was initially considered a pure goal scorer, he's actually a good all-round player, often playing as an attacking midfielder", pointing out that during the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia "Kane's contributions in deeper positions were outstanding, his back-to-goal work as impressive as ever". Although Kane is predominantly known for his clinical finishing and prolific goalscoring ability as an out-and-out striker, he is also known for his vision, technique, link-up play, and passing ability, which enables him to drop deep, bring his teammates into play, and create chances for other players; as such he is also capable of playing in a more creative role as a number 10. Kane is also one of the most clinical penalty takers in Europe, often hitting the inside side netting - a skill very few players can achieve so consistently. 

You may or may not have noticed an additional line of stitching on the upper running around the lacing system, well, this does actually serve a purpose. As well as preventing the upper from over stretching, it's main reason for being there is down to whats on the interior of the boots...

Kane's pair feature a completely custom interior construction. As opposed to the usual thin FlyKnit upper having a layer of paper thin synthetic suede as it's inside liner just like what you'd find on the retail pairs, the England captain's version of the Phantom GT Elite is constructed with a padded black nylon interior liner, which has extra padding built in to specific areas - most noticeably the medial side of the foot in the shooting/passing areas. Perhaps that is his secret to being a goal machine, who knows...

As with the vast majority of boots which leave Nike's Montebelluna Athlete Services factory, Kane's pair feature no internal size labels. Usually this is because the boots of players are made so specifically, that they actually aren't an accurate size, and as they are tailor made the players themselves don't need a size label anyway. In the above picture we can see that Kane's left foot is ever so slightly longer than his right, very fine margins but Nike construct boots like these to the smallest of details. The quality difference between these and a standard retail pair is absolutely phenomenal. 

Harry Kane is certainly one of the sharpest and most clinical finishers in Europe, but where does the England captain rank in the list of the world's best strikers for you? Let us know in the comments below!

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